You may have been sabotaging your relationships. It happens to everyone and you can do some things to improve how you interact with others.
Self-sabotage happens when your thoughts and behaviors hold you back from the life you want. Your subconscious mind brews up all kinds of theories and drama. As a result, you don’t realize you were doing things that were destroying true romance.
Well, today, you can start heading in the right direction.
So, it’s critical to learn the warning signs of self-destruction. Moreover, how to put an end to these detrimental habits.
Why would people ruin their relationships?
You probably don’t want to destroy your bond with your partner. However, your subconscious mind could have other plans. Don’t disregard its power over you. It creates your perceptions and runs most of your behaviors.
It wants you to be safe and never feel any pain ever again.
That sounds lovely, but that’s not how things work.
The subconscious doesn’t care if you waste your existence away in your comfort zone, as long as it’s painless.
If you’re going to live a fulfilled life, there will be some uncomfortable moments along the way. If you always avoid risks, you’ll never ask out that special someone or ever get married.
Your unconscious knows what you think about yourself, and it strives to mold your behaviors to match it.
For example, if you don’t feel worthy of love. It’ll block it by causing you to overreact to petty issues and bicker with people. Eventually, shatter any chance you have to make a connection.
So, if your self-image needs some work, you’ll see the symptoms in your actions and relationships.
Signs you might be sabotaging your relationship:
It’s endlessly valuable to recognize sabotaging behavior, so you can eliminate it. The following are just a few examples of habits you might have that destroy relationships.
- Blaming your partner for everything, being overly critical, and focusing on their flaws. Furthermore, denying everything you did wrong, never taking responsibility, or apologizing.
- Having a victim mindset. Playing the innocent one and portraying your partner as a villain. Over time this can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
- Gaslighting or lying to them and acting like they’re “crazy” when they ask you about it. Even small lies chip away at the foundation of your bond. On the other hand, honesty strengthens it and makes you a better person.
- Holding on to grudges and bringing up old arguments. Never forgetting their downfalls or mistakes.
- Always on guard, being overly defensive, and taking everything personally.
- Neglecting their feelings and ignoring them when they talk to you.
- Having insanely high expectations of your partner thus ensuring that you’ll never be happy with them.
- Cheating on them. In this case, it’s probably better to end the relationship. So, you can do some inner work and don’t sabotage your next relationship. Otherwise, you can both go to couple’s counseling.
I’m sure the list could continue, but you get the point. There are tons of harmful subconscious behaviors, but with the tips below, you can eliminate them.
How to put an end to self-sabotaging in your relationships:
1. Discover your relationship attachment style
“A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.”
— Mignon McLaughlin
First, it’s beneficial to learn what kind of relationship attachment style you have; basically, it’s how you relate with others. Your attachment style forms throughout your childhood, but you can develop a more secure style.
Your attachment style controls your behaviors in your relationships and even your parenting.
Examples of relationship attachment styles:
- Anxious or preoccupied. People with an anxious attachment style tend to be needy of their partner. They’re overly concerned about what the other person is thinking. They neglect themselves and take the blame for any issues.
- Dismissive or avoidant. These people are reserved, detached and they tend to steer clear from intimacy. They might appear cold and distant to their loved ones.
- Disorganized or fearful-avoidant. These partners tend to lack consistency. One day their vulnerable and needy, and the other day they’re aloof and cold.
- Secure attachment. Holding your loved one in high regard and trusting them.
Before moving on, take this free, 5-minute attachment style quiz and find out your style.
2. Clear out your baggage from the past
“Do not sabotage your new relationship with your last relationship’s poison.”
— Steve Maraboli
A great way to discover what you need to heal from your past is to think of the things that make you overly emotional. A part of you might even think that it shouldn’t bother you this much. For those situations, think about what in your past might be fueling your outbursts? Maybe it’s from an ex that treated you badly, or it could be from one of your parents.
Whenever you react emotionally to your partner, ask yourself if you’re reacting to the present or the past. Even if you don’t remember, keep asking, and the answer will reveal itself.
3. Forgive them for hurting you in the past and let it go
“There is no love without forgiveness, and there is no forgiveness without love.”
— Bryant H. McGill
In any relationship, people will get hurt in some way by accident or from angry outbursts. Strive to heal any damage on your end and forgive your partner for their part.
If you don’t forgive them, these issues will add up to a mountain of resentment. Eventually, the relationship crumbles and falls apart. Then you scoop up some of the wreckage and bring it to your next relationship. It becomes an endless cycle of pain.
So, forgive them for what happened (and forgive yourself for your part, too), then release it. If you’re having a hard time letting go, it might help if you talk to a therapist.
4. Use a journal to vent anger instead of blowing up at your sweetheart
“At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet.”
Sometimes frustrations that build up throughout the day boil over, and we immediately explode at our partner. This can cause a myriad of needless arguments and drama. It’s much better to journal about it, at least at first.
When I’m irritated with my husband, I journal about it, and the emotion dissipates. Then when I see him, I’m not angry anymore. Furthermore, the issue really wasn’t a big deal.
Writing it down allows you to step back and examine what happened with a logical mindset rather than reacting while you’re in an irrational emotional and mental state.
5. Pay attention to your behavior in the relationship
“Learning to trust is one of life’s most difficult tasks.”
— Isaac Watts
It’s much easier to point out other’s mistakes because that’s what you see. However, it takes a little work to realize your role in the situation.
So, next time you’re around them, pay close attention to how you interact.
Do you feel an urge to criticize or blame them for everything wrong? If you two get in an argument, what thoughts did you think before it started? Did you react with fear, defensiveness, or love?
6. Think positive thoughts about your partner
“You come to love not by finding the perfect person, but by seeing an imperfect person perfectly.”
— Sam Keen
It’s easy to ruin a relationship if you think mostly negative thoughts about the other person. However, you did fall in love with them, so they do have qualities you admire.
Focus on how loveable they are more often and watch your perspective change for the better. You’ll start feeling more loving towards them and less angry or even hateful.
7. Do something special for your partner
“Treasure your relationships, not your possessions.”
— Anthony J. D’Angelo
If you are always examining your partner for flaws, then you’ll forget about their good qualities and think they’re horrible. So, why not think about something nice you could do for them to show that you care?
Plan a picnic at a lake or take them camping (if they like the outdoors). You could do a chore you always put off or do something they hate doing.
Make them feel special and loved and it’ll make both of you feel more positive about the relationship.
In short, sabotaging your relationship can lead to a devastating loss that often slips past the radar. Now, you know the signs to look out for and how to stop them. All relationships take work so it’s great that there are things that will repair and enhance everything.
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